In Michigan, changes are being proposed that would strike out some of the current language included in a bill regarding landlord and tenant relations. The House Bill 4904 would amend section 5714 of the Revised Judicature Act, and the House Bill 4905 would amend section 34 of Chapter 66 of the Revised Statutes of 1846. They are designed to re-examine the circumstances under which landlords can take tenants to summary proceedings or terminate leases. The main alteration to the current bill regards controlled substance violations, and would give landlords alternatives to having to file police reports.. These bills would be beneficial to the legal rights of landlords.
Currently, there are a variety of reasons why a landlord can regain property through summary proceedings. A summary proceeding is most frequently used in landlord-tenant legal matters, and is a less formal court proceeding with no jury present and no presentation of facts. If a tenant fails to pay rent, the landlord can take the tenant to summary proceedings if he or she refuses to leave the property within 7 days of a notice to leave. The changes in the language of the bill have been suggested to amend only a couple of the scenarios in which these proceedings are needed. As the bill was written before the proposed amendments, if a tenant or anyone else under the tenant's control is in possession of a controlled substance on the leased property the landlord has to file a written police report before a written notice to quit could be delivered to the tenant. Both House Bills would take out the requirement of filing a police report by the landlord, but some form of police report would still be required. An additional alteration to the original bill would include an entirely new clause. If a tenant causes or threatens physical injury to another tenant, landlord, or anyone on the property a landlord can regain property through summary proceedings. These changes are designed to assist landlords when it comes to terminating leases and recovering premises through summary proceedings.
Those that have been asked about these changes have shown support, which indicates that these bills have a good chance of passing. The Property Management Association of West Michigan, the Property Management Association of Mid-Michigan, and the Associated Management/Grandhaven Manor all voiced their support for these bills. The Michigan Advocacy Project remained neutral when asked about the bills, and there were no reported companies that did not support the bills. If these bills are to pass, they will not likely cause a severe monetary impact. The only cost would be the requirement of an increase in summary proceedings, but aside from that the bills do not require any additional funding. The purpose of these changes is ultimately to give the landlord more control when facing issues with tenants such as violations involving controlled substances. These two bills must be passed together or neither one will be enacted, and because they only benefit landlords rather than do harm it is likely that there will be little opposition.
"A Summary of House Bills 4904 & 4905 as Reported from Committee." House
Legislative Analysis Section. 17 Dec 2009. Michigan Legislature, Web. 22 Feb 2010. http://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents/2009-2010/billanalysis/House/htm/2009-HLA-4904-3.htm.
"House Bill No. 4904." 07 May 2009. Michigan Legislature, Web. 22 Feb 2010.